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Dutch Prime Minister Rutte, Ukrainian President Zelenskyj (mid-February in Munich): Further support promised

Photo: Ukrainian Presidential Press Service / REUTERS

The Netherlands wants to contribute more than 100 million euros to a Czech initiative to buy ammunition for Ukraine.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said this after a meeting called by French President Emmanuel Macron to boost support for Ukraine.

The Czech Republic is leading the initiative to raise money for a rapid purchase of artillery ammunition from third countries for Ukraine.

For his part, Macron stated that a plan for the purchase of ammunition would be presented in the coming days.

France recently came under criticism because it provided significantly less military aid to Ukraine than Germany.

Last year, the country said it provided military support worth 2.1 billion euros.

In 2022 it was 1.7 billion euros.

Up to three billion have been promised for the current year.

Macron does not want to rule out the use of ground troops

At the international Ukraine conference in Paris, Macron did not fundamentally rule out sending Western soldiers to Ukraine.

“There is currently no consensus on this,” said the President at the end of the conference.

"But nothing should be ruled out." Macron also emphasized: "We will do everything necessary to ensure that Russia cannot win this war."

At the same time, Macron announced a coalition for medium and long-range missiles for Kiev.

Before the conference began, Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) reiterated his negative stance on the deployment of long-range Taurus cruise missiles.

At Macron's invitation, 21 European heads of state and government met in Paris to discuss further aid to Ukraine.

The reason for this is the fact that Russia's position is becoming increasingly hardened, explained Macron.

This can be seen in the planning of new attacks in Ukraine, in the death of Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny, but also in destabilization campaigns in Western countries.

Ukraine is entering the third year of the war weakened by the halting military aid from its allies.

A US aid package is currently blocked by Republican opposition in the Senate.